negative addictions

July 29, 2014 § 5 Comments

I’ve been doing everything I can to distract myself this summer. I really try not to think about adoption things and to stay busy, keeping up on my to-do lists and staying productive. Even relaxation needs to feel purposeful, such as going on a run, or reading a book. Last summer was the exact opposite–I stayed inside my sweltering hot little apartment, crying/sleeping/eating, barely even got a tan. I was always on my computer or my phone, reading adoption articles and blogs and googling adoption-related phrases, trying to ease questions in my head. I took no part in the long, fun-packed sunny days that summer should be.

Now this year, I’m oddly detached. Could I be the first person so awful that his upcoming birthdate doesn’t matter to me? It would matter to me if I thought more about it, but I don’t. I just want to enjoy this summer. I’ve started thinking that my son is dead, or that I never had him, so I can block out thoughts of him and the adoption. I will miss him for the rest of my life, and sometimes it’s just better to let it go for the moment.

For the last two years I have purposefully made no effort at any friendships, to avoid having to tell someone why I’m sad or explain any of this. But that approach becomes lonely and I’ve started pursuing friendships with other girls, especially the ones I work with. None of them know I had a baby or will ever know. When making new friends, not giving a fuck is important, as is being happy. No one is attracted to moping or desperation. And I am actually happy most of the time.

How is that okay? I often wonder. I shouldn’t be happy–not because I don’t deserve to be happy, although that may be true as well, but because, logistically, I shouldn’t be able to live with such a loss and reach past the sadness for something else. If I start feeling happier, what if that justifies everything that happened? Just because my current situation is great, does that make everything right? What if it means I don’t love my son anymore? My heart protests fiercely, no, nothing could make that okay. Saying goodbye to my son forever when he was 2 days old will never become okay, no matter what happens. As for loving him, that is absolute and unquestionable, a law of the universe. But time and distance wears on our ties.

After so long, I love him dearly but we don’t know each other. We’re not in each other’s lives. Even if the photos and updates were more frequent, this would still be true. The substance that a bond is made of, the kindling if you will, doesn’t exist. I’m tired of feeling around in empty air for something that only makes me miserable. Missing my baby, feeling sad, even awaiting the updates…I don’t want to do it anymore.

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§ 5 Responses to negative addictions

  • My mother is in a “happy place” now. Having a relationship with me is not part of it, no matter how much I wish it were.

  • Gidget says:

    You have to do whatever helps you. That doesn’t make you a bad person.

  • Sue says:

    Being happy doesn’t negate missing your baby, and you do deserve to be happy.

  • Cherry says:

    I think the pain of losing a baby is so intolerable that some kind of inner emergency measure comes into play to enable us to survive such profound pain. I think without it, we might not.

    Looking back now, I see myself divided into two selves after my son’s adoption. One self interacted with the world and continued on afterwards, often seeming quite sunny (as that’s the deal for taking part in the world) – I made friends, I studied, I travelled abroad. However, I was also aware of another self that felt absolutely isolated, as though it lived in a dripping cave, extremely lonely – that part did not move anywhere.

    I think the bond does remain, you know, between ourselves and our sons. When my adult son flew through the door for the first time, he shook as I hugged him. I was no stranger to him. I don’t think the expression of that bond is easy, as it would have been had we remained together, but I know there is something about my love that he needs. Your son may be the same. You may have something for him that only you can give.

    • You’re a good writer Cherry. I liked the “dripping cave.”

      I know what you mean about inner emergency measures. I try to take real measures, not quick clean-ups, but the fact remains that it’s a never-ending process. How anyone can be expected (encouraged) to live through this is beyond me.

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